Ranger4 DevOps Blog

IBM Acquires StrongLoop to Help Developers Create APIs for a New Wave of Digital Transformation in the Cloud

Posted by Steve Green on Tue, Sep 15, 2015 @ 18:09 PM

Today’s leading companies are transforming digitally, creating deeper client engagement with mobile, IoT and web applications. By creating application programming interfaces (APIs) to connect these apps to enterprise data and services, you can create a richer and more personalized client experience.

That’s why IBM acquired StrongLoop, whose Node.js solutions are quickly becoming the standard for developing APIs and microservices - increasingly essential for successful DevOps automations. With StrongLoop, you can easily connect front-end applications with back-end systems through APIs in an open hybrid cloud environment.

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Topics: IBM, IBM Premier Partner

Multi-Platform Deployment Automation with IBM UrbanCode

Posted by George Price on Fri, Jul 10, 2015 @ 11:07 AM

Despite the need for greater agility and multi-tier integration, many organisations struggle to respond to market forces and effectively deliver high quality applications.

Multi-platform applications are laden with manual, rigid and error-prone processes that lack repeatability, scalability and speed, as a result slow deployments to test environments leave team waiting and unproductive and a lack of visibility and control over configuration and application changes leads to errors and rework.

All of these delays result in missed opportunity, delivery of composite applications requires a highly repeatable and reliable deployment process to synchronise all tiers from mobile front end on public cloud to the on premise back end services on z/OS, today mainframe and distributed teams use separate tools and processes making coordination across platforms and environments difficult.

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Topics: IBM, UrbanCode

Breaking Environment Limitations with Integration Testing - Part 3

Posted by Andrew Cullum on Fri, Mar 27, 2015 @ 18:03 PM

Part 3 of 3

Rapid integration testing is a key to delivering frequent, high quality software. But, environment availability is often a limiting factor. In Part 1 we took a look at the limitations on environments, in part 2 we looked at techniques to resolve the bottleneck and this week we will conclude this 3 part blog by looking at a realistic scenario that brings the techniques together.

A realistic scenario that brings the techniques together

The fictitious example of a major system called Marketplace shows how to use the tools together. Marketplace is made up of many pieces.

  • 60 web services that are somewhat tightly coupled. Four teams each own 15 services.
  • Mainframe components contribute to 20% of transactions; the components rarely change and are owned by another team.
  • The front end website, in front of the services, is owned by the dot-com team.
  • Data feeds from 2 third parties are used (via web service). One is metered on transactions, the second is not.

The Marketplace release team had one large Integration Test Environment (INT) and a Performance Testing Environment (PERF). Each of the six teams now has a small test lab where they can test some of the components, but they cannot test any integrated scenarios. Integration testing is on the release schedule and release management has governed access to the INT and PERF environments.

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Topics: Service Virtualization, IBM

Breaking Environment Limitations with Integration Testing - Part 2

Posted by Andrew Cullum on Tue, Mar 17, 2015 @ 16:03 PM

Part 2 of 3

Rapid integration testing is a key to delivering frequent, high quality software. But, environment availability is often a limiting factor. In Part 1 we took a look at the limitations on environments, this week we will be looking at techniques to resolve the bottleneck.

Techniques to resolve the bottleneck

There are three techniques that smooth out the issues with integration test environments and promote their availability: Environment reservation, environments as a service, and service virtualization. Each technique solves different parts of the problem.

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Topics: Service Virtualization, IBM

Breaking Environment Limitations with Integration Testing - Part 1

Posted by Andrew Cullum on Wed, Mar 11, 2015 @ 17:03 PM

Part 1 of 3

Strategies to improve environment availability

Rapid integration testing is a key to delivering frequent, high quality software. But, environment availability is often a limiting factor. This article reviews several strategies to improve environment availability as well as when to use each strategy.

Integration testing is where the systems delivered are validated. It’s where the business can really see applications and determine whether or not development has built what was required. As software systems become increasingly componentized and are made of more and more services, the lag time from code change to integration testing is a key predictor of time to market and developer productivity.

The ideal process is simple. Every time a developer changes code, all tests are run quickly and feedback to the developer delivered. The changed components are built, unit tested, deployed to an integration environment, and all integrations test run in just a few minutes.

Unfortunately, that ideal is not reality for many teams. Automated tests can be too few or take too long. Continuous integration might not be set up. Automated deployments of complex applications can require special tools.

Solutions to these challenges are fairly well understood today. Tests should be automated with a heavy weight towards API testing. Setting up a continuous automated build processes is simple so there is no excuse for not having one. Deployment automation tools are now well established.

However, an increasingly common challenge for many organizations is a lack of integration testing environments. They may be incomplete. They may be inconsistent. There just may not be enough of them. This article looks at why these problems exist and what to do about it.

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Topics: Service Virtualization, IBM

UrbanCode Deploy with Patterns

Posted by Tejinder Sehgal on Thu, Oct 16, 2014 @ 13:10 PM

What is UrbanCode Deploy with Patterns?

IBM UrbanCode Deploy with Patterns is an environment management and deployment solution that enables users to design, deploy and update full-stack environment for multiple clouds. Containing UrbanCode Deploy and a cloud pattern designer, UrbanCode Deploy with Patterns optimises your continuous delivery throughput by automating infrastructure on the cloud and uses open standards defined by OpenStack. Organisations use UrbanCode Deploy with Patterns to holistically manage and control their application workloads while users can design, deploy, and reuse environments quickly with improves collaboration, lifecycle management, and cloud portability.

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Topics: Patterns, IBM, UrbanCode

What is UrbanCode?

Posted by Tejinder Sehgal on Fri, Oct 10, 2014 @ 17:10 PM

Although we have written many different blogs about IBM UrbanCode and the large number of plugins available for UrbanCode, we have never actually written a blog on what UrbanCode is. In this blog we will be looking at UrbanCode what it is and its two main features.

Before we dive into the technical stuff, let’s start with an interesting fact about UrbanCode, UrbanCode was named by one of the 3 co-founders of the company and wife of Maciej Zawadzki as stated in this Innovate 2013 interview.

UrbanCode is Application Release Automation (ARA) software which is made up of two main components IBM UrbanCode Deploy & IBM UrbanCode Release. UrbanCode software products enable organisations (both large enterprises and smaller companies) get from development into production faster.

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Topics: IBM, UrbanCode, application release automation

Mobile in Your DevOps Toolchain

Posted by Tejinder Sehgal on Tue, Oct 7, 2014 @ 12:10 PM

Challenges in Mobile Development

The challenge encountered by mobile developers currently are the fragmentation of the mobile market; there are many different platforms (Windows, BlackBerry, Apple and Android) in addition to the variation of handset sizes with (mobile phones) screen sizes ranging from 3.5 to 5.7 inches. 85% of users expect better experience on mobile than desktop although desktop has much more technology integrated within it. Some of the other challenges are shown in the picture below:

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Topics: Mobile, Worklight, IBM

Requirements Driven Quality Management with DOORS Next Generation

Posted by Tejinder Sehgal on Fri, Aug 15, 2014 @ 11:08 AM

What is DOORS Next Gen?

IBM Rational DOORS Next Generation offers a smarter way to manage your requirements. Designed for collaboration, Rational DOORS Next Generation provides a single platform for managing requirements so that your teams can work more effectively across disciplines, time zones and supply chains.

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Topics: DOORS Next Generation, IBM

What’s New in UrbanCode Release Version 6.1?

Posted by Tejinder Sehgal on Wed, Aug 6, 2014 @ 12:08 PM

IBM UrbanCode Release (formerly called uRelease) 6.1 is here, but what's new?

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Topics: IBM, UrbanCode, application release automation